Body Tracking Gets Classy: Hands-On With the New CORE 2

BodyMedia is stepping up its game when it comes to tracking your body. The company unveiled the BodyMedia CORE 2 at CES 2013, the newest, smallest and most fashionable body monitor yet. There are currently two looks: One is a sporty armband and the other an elegant metal chassis, but the flexibility of the interchangeable unit will give rise to numerous options that will fit every user's tastes.

Like its other products, the CORE 2 has four unique sensors for the ultimate information tracking: temperature, heat flux, galvanic skin response and 3-axis accelerometer sensors. These senors capture more than 5,000 data points per minute, giving an extremely comprehensive report about the body's current and past states. The unit tracks calorie burn, exercise intensity and sleep patterns to provide a real-time look at your healthy habits as well as tracking trends over time.

The CORE 2 unit can be interchanged with different straps, including a sports strap and a more elegant metal strap. BodyMedia designed the CORE 2 to be worn at all times, so the different looks can pair with different outfits, allowing users to confidently wear the body monitoring unit even while out at high-end events. But at its core, this unit is about the fitness enthusiast, and there will also be a more function-focused strap with an incorporated heart rate monitor, allowing for real-time pulse information.

We really liked the look of the metal band, and the unit was incredibly lightweight. We held the new CORE 2 up next to the older CORE and the size difference was impressive. The new unit is much smaller than the older model, and can definitely be hidden under a T-shirt sleeve.

Like the BodyMedia Fit Link, the CORE 2 syncs via Bluetooth, enabling up-to-the-minute information that connects in the background without pressing any buttons or plugging in the device. The CORE 2 currently works with the iPhone and iPad and can also sync directly to a Bluetooth-enabled computer. If your notebook doesn't have Bluetooth and you're lacking an iOS device, the unit also comes with a USB Bluetooth dongle that will capture information as soon as the CORE 2 is in range. Unfortunately, the CORE 2 is not yet Android-compatible.

There's no official price yet for the CORE 2, but it will be in the same range as the BodyMedia Fit Link ($149) and the BodyMedia CORE ($119). The CORE 2 should be available in August on its website and will include the sports strap, with other straps sold separately.

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